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Dogs Help Keep A Woman Alive While She Spends 3 Days Injured And Lost In A Forest

A dog walker named Annette Poitras, has had a rough couple of nights. She set off for a hike with three dogs, but while walking through a forest she fell and injured her leg. She had walked two hours into the woods, but slipped on a log and lost her phone. She was stuck in damp conditions with three dogs who wanted to go home, but together they made it through.

It took three days for anyone to find her, but now her husband, Marcel Poitras, has revealed how she is doing now, and how she survived this traumatic incident.

Coquitlam RCMP

"Annette's doing really good — no broken bones or anything. She basically just needs to be on an IV," he said. "It's more a situation of trauma to her muscle from when she fell and was crawling around trying to get to where the helicopter could see her."

"She basically had to lay there for quite a while. She couldn't move," said Poitras. "No broken bones, but she got muscle damage right in a spot that didn't allow her to get up."

She managed to make it through a rough few days thanks to the help of three wonderful dogs...

The dogs actually helped her survive. Her husband said that having them nearby gave her helpful tricks to survive the cold and damp weather. "She just basically went on instinct and watched the dogs and kinda did some of the same things," he said. "The [forest] overburden soaks up the water [so] moving that out of the way she got down in the dirt where it's actually a little warmer and just basically hunkered down and waited for help."

She had been bundled up in two jackets before the hike, but one of the dogs who was with her was just as cold as she was. She put one of the rain coats on the Boxer, Roxy, to help her stop shivering. "Roxy was lying beside her," said Poitras. "She has very short fur and was almost as cold as she was."

"Her dog Chloe, she's not one to cuddle so she didn't help in that sense. But she didn't lie down. She sat up all night and didn't sleep. She sat watching Annette, and Annette just really felt she was on guard all night," Poitras explained.

Susana da Silva/CBC

There was another dog with them named Bubba, but while she was sleeping he wandered away. "Bubba is very food focused, and thought, if nobody is going to feed me, I'll go feed myself," said Poitras. "So the next day, that's what got Annette off the ground and got her moving a little bit because she had to go find him. She found him and got them together, and they hunkered down."  

Coquitlam SAR

Three days after she went missing, Annette was found. "She was lying on the ground prone," said Darren Timmer, leader of the Coquitlam Search and Rescue team. "She could not get up, but she could wave her hand to get our attention. The dogs were very excited that we were there. We heard them from a distance."

North Shore Rescue

The dogs are all doing well, and were even able to come visit her in the hospital. "She's not very mobile now, so we're going to get her some physiotherapy and get her up and walking around," said Poitras. "All things considered she's in good spirits."

Marcel Poitras

The dogs were happy to be back with their friend.

Marcel Poitras

They did a great job taking care of her!

Marcel Poitras

It was a rough week for Annette, but now she can recover with some friendly pooches who are helping her to get well soon!

Tanya has been writing for Shared for two years. She spends too much time thinking about dogs, Marvel movies, and ice cream. You can reach me at tanya@shared.com